Tag Archives: startup

Startup CEO Arrested for Child Abuse, Assault, and Attempted Murder

News broke on Friday that Zain Jaffer, ex-CEO of mobile ads startup Vungle, was arrested for child abuse (including a charge of oral copulation of a person under 14), assault, and attempted murder. 

The company replaced Jaffer as CEO a day before the allegations were reported in the tech press. The San Mateo County Sheriff’s website indicates that an inmate named Jaffer is being held at the Maple Street Correctional Center in Redwood City, California. 

Jaffer was featured as part of Inc.’s 35 Under 35 Coolest Entrepreneurs package in 2014.

A Vungle spokesperson wasn’t immediately available. Earlier today, a company representative told VentureBeat: “While we do not have any information that is not in the public record at this point, these are extremely serious allegations, and we are shocked beyond words.” The charges are “obviously so serious that it led to the immediate removal of Mr. Jaffer from any operational responsibility at the company,” the rep told VentureBeat.

Jaffer’s next scheduled court date is Nov. 1, according to the San Mateo County Sheriff’s records.


Bosch partners with startup Nikola on electric long-haul truck

DETROIT (Reuters) – Bosch, the German auto components supplier, is partnering with startup Nikola Motor Co to bring two hydrogen-electric, long-haul, heavy-duty truck models to market by 2021, the companies said on Tuesday.

The market for electric medium- and heavy-duty trucks is in its infancy, but has drawn a growing crowd of competitors.

Manufacturers such as Daimler and Navistar International Corp, as well as electric car maker Tesla Inc and a host of other new entrants, are racing to overcome the challenges of substituting batteries for diesel engines as regulators crack down on carbon dioxide and soot pollution.

Bosch and Nikola will jointly develop a powertrain, which transmits drive from the engine of a vehicle to its axle, using Bosch’s eAxle technology. Bosch, which had 73.1 billion euros ($ 87 billion) in sales in 2016, has been shifting away from traditional combustion engine technologies to zero-emission vehicles.

The vehicle uses a hydrogen fuel cell to power the electric motor. Hydrogen fuel cells are easier and quicker to charge than batteries and have a longer range.

The Nikola One and Nikola Two models are both supposed to have a range of between 800 miles to 1,200 miles, an electric powertrain and zero emissions.

Bosch and Salt Lake City-based Nikola said the eAxle system will be paired with a jointly developed “custom-designed fuel cell system,” and hope the powertrain will achieve “segment-leading performance at a competitive total cost of ownership.”

High battery costs are a significant hurdle to mass adoption of electric vehicles as they limit vehicle range and size. Industry executives like Navistar Chief Executive Officer Troy Clarke say that in the short term, electric package delivery vehicles in urban areas with short, predictable routes will be the main area for competition until battery prices come down.

Last week Daimler said United Parcel Service Inc will be the first U.S. commercial customer for its new battery-powered eCanter package delivery truck. The company hopes to expand electric truck production as lower-cost, longer-range batteries become available within two to three years.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted last week that the Silicon Valley company would show off a prototype of an electric semi-trailer truck on Oct. 26.

Reuters reported last month that Tesla’s semi is expected to offer a range of 200 miles to 300 miles, far less than the 1,000 miles for some diesel-powered counterparts that U.S. long-haul truckers use.

Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


Inside the maddening ‘cult’ of a billion-dollar tech startup



The loud lacrosse bros, eerie employee disappearances and lack of any discernible leadership should all have been clear warning signs that something strange was going on at HubSpot.

But it took a teddy bear to really drive the point home for Dan Lyons, a veteran technology writer who joined the billion-dollar marketing startup in 2013 in his early 50s to kickstart a second career and support his family.

After more than two months of struggling to find his way at HubSpot, Lyons hit one of many breaking points when everyone at the company was instructed to share and praise a LinkedIn post by one of the co-founders, who touted the benefits of bringing a teddy bear into meetings. Not a metaphorical teddy bear, an actual teddy bear. Read more…

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Cloud Computing

Silicon Valley’s Hottest Startup Incubator Takes On This Indian Venture

Just one year ago, Indian e-coupon aggregator LafaLafa.com was barely a blip in the mind of, well, anyone. It’s been quite the year though – testament to the booming tech environment in India, they’re one of the privileged few to be on their way to be accelerated by one of Silicon Valley’s hottest startup incubators.

Cloud Computing